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Brothers, D. Shane, E. (2020). Epilogue: As Women Age: A Psychoanalytic Perspective. Psychoanal. Inq., 40(3):220.

(2020). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 40(3):220


Epilogue: As Women Age: A Psychoanalytic Perspective

Doris Brothers, Ph.D. and Estelle Shane, Ph.D.

Since we were not entirely immune to the prejudices against aging women that suffuse our society, we experienced some trepidation about editing this issue of Psychoanalytic Inquiry. Perhaps, they (we) are not worth writing about after all. Perhaps not enough people will overcome the dread of aging to read the articles. And if they do, we wondered, will they discover enough that is novel and thought-provoking? We are immensely pleased and relieved to find that our worries were unfounded. The richness and range of perspectives that mark these articles attest to the value of psychoanalytic explorations of aging women in today’s world. What is more, we have come to see that these articles merely scratch the surface of what it means for women to age in today’s world. Here are just a few of the many questions that remain unanswered: Do women in other cultures have the same experiences of aging as women in ours? How does the cognitive decline that normally attends aging affect a woman’s experience of self and others? Are there differences in the analytic treatment of aging women by male and female analysts? What does it mean for a woman to be treated by an analyst who is younger than herself?

We hope that these superb articles will inspire other analytic writers to pursue these and other questions. And, more importantly, that their writings will help to dispel the shame and distress that too many women feel as they grow old.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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